Network Rail gets behind Samaritans to bust ‘Blue Monday’ myth

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Network Rail has joined Samaritans to encourage the public to have a cuppa and a catch up for the charity’s annual Brew Monday campaign.

Samaritans has long campaigned to dispel the idea that the third Monday of January, also known as ‘Blue Monday’, is the saddest day of the year. The suicide prevention charity’s listening volunteers are consistently busy every day of the year, responding to a call for help every 10 seconds, which is why it is working with the rail industry to turn the day into something useful by running Brew Monday. The annual event encourages friends and family to stay connected by having a cuppa and a catch up, and this year is no different.

Samaritans volunteers will be at a number of stations across Britain today (Monday 15 January) handing out teabags and chatting to passengers about the power of connecting over a cuppa.

Louise McNally, suicide prevention lead at Network Rail said: “When life throws various challenges there is always time for a cuppa and a catch up. That’s why we’re supporting Samaritans’ Brew Monday and encouraging everyone to reach out and connect with family, friends, colleagues and loved ones.”

Olivia Cayley, head of Samaritans Rail Programme, added: “At Samaritans we know there is no such thing as Blue Monday and people can feel low at any point of the week or year.

“Perpetuating ‘Blue Monday’ may put off reaching for life-changing help if they think everyone else is also feeling down.

“It could also lead people to think they ought to be feeling sad, or believe other people are in worse situations. We do not want anyone to dismiss or minimise the challenging issues they’re facing.

“We want everyone to know that you are never alone and even small moments of human connection like this can play a big role in helping people who are currently struggling.”

“We’re so grateful to the rail industry for their support of Brew Monday again this year.

“Our volunteers are available around the clock to listen to anyone who needs support this Brew Monday and every other day of the year, 24/7.”

The Brew Monday support comes as part of the rail industry’s suicide prevention programme and partnership with Network Rail.

Samaritans has worked in partnership with the rail industry and British Transport Police to reduce suicides on the railway for over 10 years and has trained over 28,000 rail and BTP staff to look out for passengers and make conversation if they feel someone might be vulnerable.

To help organise Brew Monday get togethers, Samaritans has provided useful resources, fundraising tips, and information, available at: www.samaritans.org/support-us/campaign/brew-monday/

For more information, please contact Katie May Tracy, Communications Officer, Samaritans, [email protected]

Anyone can contact Samaritans, free, any time from any phone on 116 123, or email [email protected] or visit www.samaritans.org.

Image credit: Istockphoto.com / Samaritans

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